University of Washington officials in Seattle are accused of filing false reports to the U.S. Dept. of Agriculture, according to a complaint filed with the USDA by the national research watchdog organization, SAEN.
A major news conference to release details of the complaint is scheduled on THURSDAY, 10:15 a.m. at the Seattle Tower (1218 Third Avenue, 3rd
Floor, Room 315), hosted by SAEN, an Ohio-based non-profit investigatory
SAEN was the original filer of the federal complaint that exposed abuses by UW researcher Albert Fuchs in late 2006. Fuchs has since been reprimanded by the UW, cited by the USDA and barred from publishing his research.
Thursday, SAEN will make public internal UW documents indicating the school has falsified reports by not reporting research that cause unrelieved pain and/or distress. SAEN analysts have concluded UW projects fall into this category, but have not been reported honestly. The university is liable for heavy fines for violating federal law.
SAEN said it has uncovered protocols at UW where researchers routinely deprive macaque monkeys of water for as long as 18 hours per day, 5 days per week. In other laboratories these practices have led to primates of approximately 28 pounds receiving less than one-quarter cup of water for an entire day.
"The practice of depriving primates of water is such a cruel practice that it should not be allowed by government regulatory agencies," said Michael A. Budkie, A.H.T., SAEN's Executive Director. "If a private individual deprived a companion animal of water in this way, they would go to jail."